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stack of homemade lemon bars

Homemade Lemon Bars

Homemade Lemon Bars, also known as Lemon Squares, are a super sweet and tart bar cookie. The base is a rich and delicious lemon shortbread. The top is a creamy and heavenly lemon custard layer. The ratio of lemon to shortbread is perfect. This is the best lemon bar recipe you will find!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
cool time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Servings 16 servings
Calories 237


Shortbread crust:

  • ¾ cup butter (softened (12 tablespoons) )
  • cup granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • zest from one lemon

Lemon layer

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • cup all purpose flour
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • sweetened dried lemon slices (optional)
  • powdered sugar for dusting


  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • In a medium bowl or your stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat until well blended. Add flour and lemon zest and blend just until a crumb mixture forms. Press into the bottom of an ungreased parchment lined 9x9 inch pan.
  • Bake shortbread for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until firm and golden. 
  • While the crust is cooking, whisk together the remaining 1 ½ cups sugar and ¼ cup flour in a separate bowl. Whisk in the eggs and lemon juice. Pour over the baked crust.
  • Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes. If adding sweetened dried lemon slices, press them into the top a few minutes before the baking is complete. Remove from oven and allow bars to cool to room temperature. Transfer to the refrigerator and allow bars to chill. The bars will firm up as they cool. Remove from pan and cut into nine 3-inch squares for large lemon bars or 16 smaller 2-inch squares.


serving size is one 2-inch bar


Calories: 237kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 92mg | Potassium: 43mg | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 325IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 0.9mg